A flesh-eating drug may have made its way to Fulton

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FULTON - A flesh-eating drug might be being sold on the streets in Fulton, law enforcement officials said Wednesday.

Fulton Police Chief Steve Myers said the department's drug informants found what they believe is the dangerous drug called crocodil.

"In the past few months we have had two reports of this crocodil being in mid-Missouri and possibly Fulton," Myers said.

Callaway County Sergeant Shannon Jeffries said he worries the drug could catch on in central Missouri due to the popularity of heroin use in many communities.

"With crocodil being made easily, made locally, and much cheaper than heroin, heroin users are going to go to it," Jeffries said. "And the side effects from crocodil are much more dangerous."

According to a report from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, crocodil damages blood vessels and soft tissue in the skin. Abusers of the drug might see their skin turn a greenish color and look scaled and rugged like a crocodile. These conditions usually lead to limb amputation or even death.

"It literally eats the user up from the inside out because of chemicals that are in it," Myers said.

The DEA said crocodil first surfaced internationally in 2002, and spread to as many as a million addicts in Russia.

"It's another huge challenge for us in law enforcement to try to curb those sales and that product coming into mid-Missouri," Myers said.